Ibiza Town or San Antonio? That’s like deciding on Maradona or Pele, Schumacher or Hamilton and even Pacha vs Privilege. Both are solid choices to spend your holiday in Ibiza. It is also a common question amongst Ibiza first-timers.
But how should you decide? Well, let’s start by breaking the answer up into three (3) questions:
- First, what daytime entertainment is on offer?
- Which has the better variety of nightlife?
- Third, who has the better location, convenience and accommodation options?
So without further delay let’s find out which is better and where you should stay.
Both areas have plenty to offer, whether you’re after poolside shenanigans, lazy days on the beach, sipping designer cocktails in the sun or a day trip nearby.
A significant difference between the two areas is the tourist that typically stays in each. San Antonio is known for having predominantly young people, while Ibiza Town attracts are a more mixed crowd.
It is located on the Western side of the island. The world-famous sunset strip is home to the likes of Café del Mar and Café Mambo. And the Punta des Moli offers a plethora of daytime fun to visitors.
The long stretch of beachfront has an extensive list of water sports and activities that should keep you entertained for ages., including:
- Jet ski excursions (see below)
- Kayaking & Stand Up Paddling (SUP)
- Boat trips & parties (see below)
San Antonio Bay also offers a great selection of day clubs, beach bars and restaurants. The likes of Ocean Beach provide some of the finest daytime live entertainment on the island, and their pool parties are the stuff of legend.
If you are on a stricter budget, then the town of San Antonio itself has more than enough choice to grab some food and some of the more generous alcohol deals on the island.
The locals call it Eivissa, and it’s on the Sothern side of the island. Ibiza Town is quite different from San Antonio and is generally more upmarket.
The port is the central ferry point between the other small islands such as Formentera. Therefore, making the crossing to Formentera for a day trip is well worth it and one that I highly recommend.
The old town is full of quaint boutique shops, gourmet coffee shops and small delicatessens. Unfortunately, however, the town itself isn’t located on a beachfront.
You’ll need to make the short drive (or long walk) to Playa d’en Bossa, the largest beach on the island and party central of Ibiza.
During the day, there is plenty of action along the Playa d’en Bossa promenade. Which has well-known spots like Bora Bora offering daytime parties along the beachfront.
Related Article: What is Playa d’en Bossa like?
🏆 Winner for daytime – San Antonio
You’d be correct if you think it’s Ibiza, so it doesn’t matter where you stay. However, things are more nuanced than that, and nightlife extends beyond just Ibiza’s nightclubs.
Nightlife in San Antonio
The recent changes to the noise regulations by the local council have battered San Antonio, which means that the days of clubbing well past sunrise are a thing of the past in San Antonio.
The sunset vibes at Café Mambo provide the precursor to the storied long nights of festivities that Ibiza is famous for.
If you feel extra frisky, you can drink yourself into next week on cheap fishbowls and Jagermeister along Carrer de Santa Agnès.
Nightlife in Ibiza town
The town undergoes a pretty transformation as the sun gives way to the night skies. Dalt Vila becomes illuminated above the old town centre, and the relaxed daytime atmosphere becomes busy.
Along the waterfront, you’ll find many restaurants and chic bars to have a prematch cocktail before heading into one of the nightclubs.
Ibiza town is home to Lio, Pacha and HEART. And with the less restrictive noise laws in the area, they can keep the party going until 06.00 each morning. Unfortunately, nowhere in Ibiza can do better than this currently.
Playa d’en Bossa makes the nighttime offering even more appealing when you consider it’s where you can find Hi Ibiza, Usuahia, DC-10, Octan and SAWG.
🏆 Winner for nightlife – Ibiza Town
Location, convenience and accommodation
Ibiza Town is a short 5-10 minute drive/taxi from the airport, while San Antonio will take you any from 20-25 minutes to get to. This journey time will be considerably longer in peak summer due to traffic.
San Antonio is a more resort-focused town with scores of hotels to book but is somewhat limited in other accommodation types.
The West End of Ibiza is full of beautiful places, and San Antonio Bay is a great place to stay if you want to discover hidden coves and beaches. Exploring this part of the island and experiencing a magical sunset is easy to do from San Antonio.
Read Next: Whats is San Antonio Bay Like?
If you include Playa d’en Bossa, then Ibiza Town has a better spread of hotels, apartments, and even villas to book.
But to experience the island’s beautiful surroundings and the best beaches, you’ll need to make more effort. Some must-see attractions like Cala Comte and Cala Tarida take considerably longer to reach if you stay in Ibiza Town or Playa d’en Bossa.
🏆 Winner for Location – San Antonio
San Antonio hotels
Both the beachfront along the bay and the town itself have plenty of hotel choices. Prices are generally cheaper than in other areas of Ibiza as long as you book far enough in advance.
To help break it down further, here are some excellent choices in terms of luxury, budget and party hotels.
Ibiza Town Hotels
If you plan to stay in Ibiza Town for your holiday, higher prices are found along the yacht marina and Talamanca side. And the friendly budget options are closer to Playa d’en Bossa.
🏆 Winner for convenience – Ibiza town
🏆 Winner for accommodation – Ibiza town
Well, that turned out to be extremely close. And by the narrowest of margins, I’ve given the nod to Ibiza Town by a score of 3-2.
There isn’t that much to separate the two, and Ibiza Town edges it based on more accommodation variety and a better nightlife experience.
So if you are a first-timer planning an Ibiza pilgrimage, this article has hopefully helped lay out the benefits of staying in either.
However, be warned that it’s highly likely that after you spend your first holiday here, you’ll fall in love with Ibiza and want to visit again. That means you can stay in both and get the best of both worlds!